Shannon Brady
Writer & Editor

Father’s Day is a special occasion to show fathers, godfathers, grandfathers and father figures in your life how much you care for and appreciate them. Check out our previous article on Father’s Day for more information about the history of the holiday.

In the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, Father’s Day takes place annually on the third Sunday in June. However, the holiday is celebrated worldwide, not only on several different dates, but in many different ways. While the core of the day — celebrating Dad with gifts and gestures of affection you know he’ll love — remains the same, every country has their own special way of showing it.

Here are just a few traditions from around the world:


In Brazil, Father’s Day is held on the second Sunday in August: the feast day of Saint Joachim, who in Christian belief is the father of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, and the patron saint of fathers and grandfathers. While it is not observed as a religious holiday, the selection of this date lends Father’s Day a little extra significance.


In Germany, Father’s Day also falls on a Christian holiday: Ascension Day, which celebrates the story of Jesus Christ’s ascension to heaven body and soul. This places Father’s Day forty days after Easter, which usually winds up being a Thursday. Fathers often enjoy a four-day weekend doing their favorite things.


Father’s Day in Japan takes place on the third Sunday in June. Popular choices of gifts for Japanese dads include beer and cigarettes, delicacy seafoods, and sharp new clothes. Being a public holiday, fathers will also enjoy a day off from work as well.


Also celebrated on the third Sunday in June, Father’s Day in Mexico is a community-wide event. Dads can take part in “Carrera Día del Padre,” a 21-kilometer run through Mexico City, cheered on by their families. At home, they will share cards, gifts, and a sweet meal.


Spain joins other predominantly Catholic countries, such as Italy and Portugal, in celebrating Father’s Day on March 19. This is the Christian feast day of Saint Joseph, husband to Mary and stepfather to Jesus Christ in Christian lore. Attending Father’s Day services at church are common, but afterwards, so are gift giving and sharing a meal or snacks.


In Thailand, Father’s Day is celebrated on December 5, the birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Also known as King Bhumibol the Great, he reigned for over 70 years and was widely respected by his country. People wear yellow and children traditionally gift their fathers canna lilies, which symbolize masculinity.

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